The Sussexes’ ‘rental’ of Frogmore Cottage will be over in March 2022

Prince Harry and Meghan Duchess of Sussex visit Canada House in London

For some reason – probably because I am an Old – it honestly did not occur to me that there was a definitive end-date for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s “rental” of Frogmore Cottage, which is part of the Windsor Castle complex. Windsor Castle is a Crown estate, meaning the expenditures related to the upkeep and rentals are somewhat publicly accessible. Frogmore Cottage was “given” to the Sussexes in late 2018, with the understanding that it was a belated wedding gift and that the cottage needed significant renovations, both structural and cosmetic. Thus, months and years of outrage for what Harry & Meghan “spent” renovating Frogmore, which (again) was supposed to be a “gift.” As part of the Windsors’ financial releases this week, we’ve learned more about the Frogmore Cottage rental and the money Harry “paid back” to the Crown Estate for the rental.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex’s £2.4 million reimbursement of the taxpayer for renovating Frogmore Cottage also included more than 18 months’ rent, royal accounts have revealed. Critics had urged Harry and Meghan to pay back the millions spent refurbishing the property after they stepped down as working royals for financial and personal freedom and moved to the US early in 2020. It was thought the substantial sum covered just the updating of the period home close to Windsor Castle, but the annual report on royal finances appears to indicate that it included rental costs as well.

A senior royal source said: ‘The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have paid £2.4 million and we’re satisfied that, on the basis of that payment, it satisfies all their current obligations.’

They also committed to pay back the £2.4m cost of renovating their home, Frogmore Cottage in Windsor, a bill initially footed by the UK taxpayer. The large sum also appears to cover a 22-month rental period – from June 2020 until March 2022 when the couple’s annual licence to occupy their private UK home is up for renewal.

The source said: ‘The Duke and Duchess of Sussex have paid £2.4 million, which covers the rental income in 2020/21, rental income in 2021/22… So all of the payments are reflected in the accounts.’

In the 2018/19 royal financial report the work to renovate Frogmore Cottage was listed as costing £2.4 million, with the document adding: ‘The scheme consisted of the reconfiguration and full refurbishment of five residential units in poor condition to create the official residence for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex and their family. The works started on site in November 2018 and were substantially completed by the end of March 2019.’

A spokesperson for the Sussexes said: ‘The duke made a substantial contribution to the Sovereign Grant last year to support necessary and existing refurbishments to Frogmore Cottage, which specifically included essential structural updates to the building. As part of this agreement, all tenant obligations are being met. The duke and duchess continue to operate with no money being drawn from the UK taxpayer.’

[From The Daily Mail]

So, the Sussexes had to pay for the renovation of their “gifted” cottage, which they do not own outright, and they also had to pay rent on a property which was (again) given as a gift, and one which they have barely resided in for the past 20 months, and are currently subletting to Princess Eugenie. And you can bet that when the March 2022 “renewal” issue comes up, the British outlets will make that into the next big controversy, of how dare they refuse to extend their rental, after all of those renovations, how dare they refuse to come back to Frogmore! Anyway, we knew that the Windsors sucked, but getting Harry and Meghan to pay £2.4 million to renovate a decrepit shack that they don’t even own and which will be rented out by someone else come March of next year? Disgusting.

The Duke and Duchess of Sussex board a flight to New Zealand

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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148 Responses to “The Sussexes’ ‘rental’ of Frogmore Cottage will be over in March 2022”

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  1. Tammy says:

    Sweet gift…

    • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

      I thought keeping up royal properties that belong to the crown were *supposed* to be kept up to date/repaired using the monies from the SG that is specifically designated just for that structural upkeep (roof/electrical/ etc). We KNOW Buckingham Brenda has fudged the accounts before (see how the govt has had to pay even more for all of the electrical and other work going on at BP now, as she has not kept that up). So WHY isn’t there an accounting of THAT money?? WHERE has that allocated money been spent, and on what/WHO??? WHY is she allowed to get away with that? She/Chuck paid for all the structural at 1A, supposedly, Chuck paid for the “soft” furnishing (‘cos we ALL know Tight Willie didn’t reach into his own pocket!), and we heard they also raided the Queen’s attic for other pieces.

      I find it infuriating that H&M had to pay for STRUCTURAL fixes for a ROYAL PROPERTY that was falling apart. Furnishings, paint, anything more than basic flooring, light fixtures, sure… personal property. But the walls? Roof? Electrical?? BULLSH#T. Personally, as I walked away, I’d have told them to scream till the end of time before I gave them a dime for those things.

      And some gift! I never heard of a “gift” you pay a rental fee for,.

      • LMR says:

        ” I find it infuriating that H&M had to pay for STRUCTURAL fixes for a ROYAL PROPERTY that was falling apart.”

        (TheOG) Jan90067, if that’s not the best metaphor for this monarchy, I don’t know what is.

    • Dawning says:

      I was really disappointed when the news came out that H&M were “gifted” Frogmore. It was originally the servants’ quarters and was in serious disrepair. To me it was symbolic of what they thought of Meghan.
      No matter how many framed pictures of H&M Betty displays in her room, I am not impressed. By all accounts, she does not treat them like “beloved family members.”

  2. Becks1 says:

    I am wondering if they will renew their lease, or if this is part of why they are letting Eugenie live there now – to see if she likes it and wants to take over the lease (which I’m assuming will be paid for by granny.)

    I thought they had a longer lease on the cottage than that, I cannot believe that the british press essentially forced them to pay back a house that they dont own and only have a lease for until 2022.

    • Cecilia says:

      I think the lease was initially until 2022, with the prospects being that it would be prolonged after that. So basically a new lease would be signed. However with the couple now permanently residing in Cali that isn’t going to happen. I assume that if they do return to the UK they will most likely stay somewhere in windsor castle.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      I could be wrong but I think the Sussexes “offered” to pay back renovation costs in exchange for a lease on Frogmore Cottage in their exit negotiations.

    • notasugarhere says:

      This has me completely confused. No other royal had this kind of weird annual lease agreement. You pay to renovate the Crown Estate Property, pay a lump some, get a legal multi-decade lease in return.

      • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

        Most leases are like Eddie and Ford Fiesta’s: 99 yrs. So even the kids can take it over and then extend. How’d Harry end up with a 4 yr. lease?

      • Sunday says:

        Right? And no surprise that the Fail is conflating the timeline; the criticism about the £2.4 million didn’t start AFTER they announced they were stepping back, it started immediately and was absolutely incessant. It wasn’t a reaction like “well, if they’re not going to be living there they should pay it back,” it was “how dare you spend my £1.20 per year on a home for the interracial family.”

      • Courtney B says:

        @(the OG) Jan I wonder if there was thinking they’d eventually move into a different residence once Charles became king? Then he’d have control over the level of residences given to the monarch’s children. William got Anmer but he’s the FFK and will someday take over Sandringham. IDK just speculating.

      • notasugarhere says:

        They might have thought Harry and Meghan would take over the Gloucester Apartment 1, and then Wood Farm at Sandringham. They said no to the first one, because it was next door to W&K and it wouldn’t be ready before Archie arrived. The second one? Prince Philip was still living there at the time.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @Sunday – Another false criticism was that the Sussexes displaced five household to get Frogmore Cottage. The Sussexes did NOT displace anyone (maybe Ricky the Rat and his brother Dickie) from Frogmore Cottage.

        Frogmore Cottage was divided into five “apartment” units for Windsor Castle Staff accommodations. but no one had live there for YEARS as the Frogmore Cottage was considered derelict and uninhabitable by whatever is the UK equivalent of a local county US Health Department Code Enforcement Division. Frogmore Cottage had been on a list of Crown Properties requiring immediate renovation for a least 5 years before the Sussexes came on the scene.

    • elsavita Williams says:

      It was NEVER a Lease!! It was always touted as a GIFT!! below is a link to the gifts Kate Middleton was given.

  3. Scorpion says:

    I think it’s best to cut all ties at that point. I don’t think Meghan or the kids are going to come back to the UK.

    • Cecilia says:

      You forget that they still have charities in the UK that they are technically still patron of. They are going to go back eventually even if its just for a short while.

      • harla says:

        True but they could just zoom meetings with those patronages, no need to be there in person.

      • Lemons says:

        I’m sure they can afford some really nice luxury accommodations for any UK business. They can even purchase a home in London. Anywhere but the Windsor compounds.

      • lucy2 says:

        I would imagine they’d just stay at a hotel during those visits.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @lucy2 – I would. Claridge’s or the Dorchester would work for me.

  4. Noki says:

    Honestly them paying back for that SERVANTS quarter pains me like it was my own money. These people deserve Karma of biblical prorportions.

    • Jais says:

      Yeah they really want to make them, and especially Meghan, financially and emotionally destitute. They will not settle for anything less than death, divorce, or financial ruin. The glee as this happens is what gets me.

    • Myra says:

      I’m offended on their behalf. I understand why they felt they needed to do it but I’m so pissed off.

    • BnlurNforever says:

      I’ve been saying this. Unfortunately the universe don’t always work on our timeline and we might never live to see the Windsors get the comeupppance they deserve. I can still hope though because between the treatment of Diana and now Meghan and Harry retribution is overdue for this lot.

    • LillyfromLillooet says:

      So, this is a property that they do not own, cannot deed to their children, can’t sell, rent out or otherwise profit from, and they footed the bill for it to be updated? They are being treated like an owner when it comes to who must pay for repairs, and then are being treated like renters in terms of having zero equity. W.T.F.

    • Beach Dreams says:

      YES. And to learn that the money the Sussexes paid back actually benefited these freaks in their times of “struggle” and they’re STILL smearing them with impunity…karma needs to come collect her debt ASAP.

  5. Sofia says:

    I think once the lease runs out, they’ll give the cottage to Eugenie and Jack outright. I don’t know if they have the power to do that but they can probably go “we don’t want the house anymore so let Eugenie and Jack make good use of it”. Whether or not it’s given to them is another thing and something the Sussexes probably won’t be able to control. Unless they extend the lease every time and keep subletting it to E&J.

    Or they may decide to renew it and use it when they come back and E&J can temporarily move to the Royal Lodge with Andrew when the Sussexes come back. I don’t know how feasible that’ll be in reality but H&M will most likely come back to the UK some time. Yes I know that’s not something people want to hear but they most likely will come back for something – even Meghan (because she seems to have no issues with the family sans William and Charles).

    • Snuffles says:

      I think Eugenie and Jack will continue to stay there. And until March 2022, they are living there rent free. I hope they are saving their money!

      I don’t think Harry and Meghan will make use of any royal property in the future. I think they will make private accommodations if/when they return to England to serve their charities or visit friends and family that aren’t named Charles or William.

      • L84Tea says:

        I think it’s better that way. If they ever return to England for any charity work or whatever, it can all be arranged privately with the nosey Windsors being left out of it.

    • notasugarhere says:

      That’s what has me confused. All the others pay to fix it up, a lump sum, become owners of the legal lease, and get decades of lease in return. If Harry and Meghan 1) weren’t offered that or 2) didn’t want to sign decades worth of a lease? They cannot let Eugenie and family live there after March 2022, because Harry and Meghan won’t be owners of the lease. It would revert to the Crown Estate and someone else gets to purchase the lease.

  6. Nomegusta says:

    I like how they framed it as, we saved 3.3 mil pounds and NOT we SPENT 5.8 mil pounds more than last year when we were in a frigging pandemic!!!

  7. Lauren says:

    The only reason I can see them renewing the lease is so that they have their own place to crash in when they are in the UK, but seeing the grumbling and mumbling on Frogmore I wonder if it’s best just to rent another place and save those few millions per year just so that firm doesn’t have their hard earned money to dip into.

    • harla says:

      For the very infrequent (I hope) visits to the UK, Meghan and Harry could rent a very nice house.

      • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

        I guess with the security concerns, they can’t just “rent” anywhere. It has to be a property that can be contained and secured from anyone getting near enough to the property.

      • ennie says:

        The problem is that, british media could do what they did in the Cotswolds. That Frogmore cottage, or other homes in royal areas are more protected, and usually secluded. The thing to worry would be leaks, but I think it depends on the household they stay in.

      • elAnnoy says:

        Maybe Rose Hanbury can put them up at Houghton Hall.

      • Beach Dreams says:

        @ennie, Frogmore Cottage had issues with drones trying to reach the property too. Didn’t get as far or invasive as the ones spying on their Cotswold home did, but there were still reports of attempts to fly them over the property.

    • Starkille says:

      They can stay in a hotel. London’s got loads of really nice ones that also have the benefit of not being on Windsor grounds.

  8. equality says:

    I wonder whose choice it was to only lease for a short amount of time. This will be up before the jubilee so is that an indication of planned non-attendance? If they have no fixed residence in the UK, it would be easier to slip in and out though.

  9. BabsORIG says:

    I will never get over how beautiful Meghan looks in that maroon dress and how overprotective Harry is of his little family. That’s all I have for this story.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      Meghan does look spectacular in that maroon dress.

    • Sunday says:

      Meghan does look beautiful, but Harry is not overprotective when he and his family have been targeted by credible death threats from white supremacists. It’s a very real threat and he’s right to take it seriously.

  10. smee says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t those other two get a similar gift & state-funded reno that they’ve never paid towards…..?

    • Becks1 says:

      Two – Anmer (which was paid for “privately) and KP (which was a combo of taxpayer money and private money IIRC). And don’t forget they’re looking for another house!

      • Over it says:

        Yes, which will fall on the taxpayers somehow, because of security and whatever else they can get away with. Since they never say how much exactly was spent on anything, they could buy whatever they want and the public would be none the wiser

      • Amy Bee says:

        @Becks: If we’re going by the Duchy Report, there’s no such thing as private money for the Royals.

      • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

        Amner is on Sandringham which is privately owned, is it not? If so, why would ANYTHING on that property be paid for by taxpayers?

      • smlstrs says:

        I don’t know how the finances were handled but they also had the Middleton house in Bucklebury renovated “for security” which… I think included a new driveway… If I remember correctly, I’ve heard several different explanations for the cost including William paid it as a gift to Kate and / or her parents, but also that at least some taxpayer money for the security part so it’d be safe for Kate and George to visit and there’d be room for their RPOs?

      • notasugarhere says:

        Middletons had over a million in taxpayer security upgrades to their home, because of Kate staying there so often post-wedding. Security upgrades at Anmer would have also been funded by the taxpayers. Like the security at the luxury ‘farm house’ in Wales with the million pound security front door until the discussions was taken out of public view because of security concerns. All because William refused to live on base with his coworkers.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @smlstrs – I read somewhere years (2013???) ago that 350,000 to 425,000 BP was spent to convert an old barn with oats house on the Bucklebury Middleton Manor Estate into a very nice guest cottage providing accommodations for up to four people with security office to house the PRPO for the Cambridges. This was all paid by the UK taxpayer from what I have read.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      Yes, they did but the party line is that Baldy & Wiglet are full-time working royals in full-time residence in the UK.

      • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

        Man, I’d LOVE a “full time” job that I only have to show up for 30-45 min. at a time, once every couple of weeks, with MONTHS of vacation time off, and paid me multi-millions (as well as paid for my clothing and jewelery)!!!

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ (The OG), as would I!! Never having to “work” and have unlimited funds for my Botox, buttons and wiglets! Cain and Unable are the epitome of lazy, yet they are given everything that they want with no conditions and unlimited funds at their disposal.

        This pisses me off more so, than the repayment of funds for the renovation. I can’t wait to see karma coming for everyone’s ass in the Monarchy!! Especially TOB, who deserves all of the negative karma to come down on him!!

  11. LW says:

    I loved her in that plum-colored dress so much!! That’s all I’ve got. Lol

  12. Lori says:

    I cant believe a landlord can get away with making you pay for the reno of their property. Is that how sh!t works in the UK? And why are the UK press still making a big deal about the 14 million they paid for their house in California? At least they own it!

    • BayTampaBay says:

      On a repairing lease, both in the USA and UK, you be responsible for both repair cost and rent payments depending on how a lease is written.

      • anance says:

        Oh…I get it. They felt that they could refuse to renew the lease lack of payment for repairs. Awww…the best plans of mice and stupids.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        @anance – What I am saying there is such a thing as a repairing lease with rent payments. If you are making repairs plus rent, the rent is usually very low only covering taxes and insurance. There are also repairing leases where you pay a dollar or pound a year to form a written lease but are responsible for a set dollar amount of pre-agreed repairs in a set pre-agreed time frame.

        What I am saying is that I believe the Sussexes got screwed but without seeing the lease agreement we can only speculate.

    • lanne says:

      I think the Sussexes made the move to pay back frogmore to cut their obligation to the windsors. The royals are furious because frogmore was supposed to be a bludgeon to hold over their heads forever—to justify their ownership over the Sussexes. The payment for Frogmore was a Sussex freedom tax.

      • JanetDR says:

        That’s a good way to look at it @ Ianne

      • notasugarhere says:

        It feels that way. The overall Crown Estate handling of this isn’t different from Andrew, Edward, Princess Alexandra. You pay to fix it up, pay millions in advance for decades of lease.

        What’s different is the short term of the lease. Was it the Crown Estate that only offered them annual leases? Or did Harry and Meghan choose a short lease, because they were already eyeing the exits?

      • BayTampaBay says:

        I think the queen gifted the whole kitten-caboodle to Sussexes 100% free like Baldy & Wiglet with Apartment 1A and Anmer. Then the press began to complain, Meghan & Harry decided to leave and in their exit agreement agreed to pay back renovation cost as a Sussex freedom tax and received a very short term lease. At the time the exit agreement was negotiated, I do not believe (and really do not remember time line) that the Sussexes planned to be permanently in California. COVID changed everything.

  13. Mina_Esq says:

    If Harry were my son or grandson, I’d be ashamed of discussing this in public. I hope they don’t renew. They can afford to buy a nice place of their own.

  14. harla says:

    And I hope that it also marks the end of the Sussex’s ever visiting Salty AF Isle again.

    • lee says:

      i hope not. People forget Harry has a maternal family too. Why should his relationships with his maternal aunts, uncle and cousins be held hostage to the whims of his father’s family? Is that what his mother would have wanted? What right does anyone have to keep him out of the country of his birth? Same for Meghan. She shouldn’t step foot in England because the firm and the press doesn’t like her. They might have pulled that crap on Wallis Simpson because she and her husband were on the palace dole but Harry and Meghan, who pay their own way should have the right to go where they please just like anyone else.

      • equality says:

        Planes work both ways. Maybe after the pandemic is over some of his family would like a nice vacation to California.

      • Alexandria says:

        Nobody from the Spencer family even denounced the firm’s treatment on the Sussexes or called out the press.

      • Chica says:

        Having the right and whether it’s in your best interest to do something aren’t really the same. Also, buying their own property in England won’t prevent them from being targets of dangerous circumstances including security breaches. The practical reason why residing in a crown property makes the most sense is because of how much more dangerous it would be for them to live off the secured royal properties. That includes hotel stays. Some of the commentary here sounds a bit shortsighted if the real security threats that hover over the Sussexes while staying in the UK for any length of time can be relegated to an afterthoughts. It sounds like people don’t understand what time it is. Like, Harry’s family and the media have created a real-life hate mob. Who would want the sussexes to be subjected to that. Thus, if they don’t renew the lease, then they’d have to stay at someone else’s home.

  15. Alexandria says:

    After payment, I would not renew and I would never come back. Not even for funerals.

    • Carrie says:

      Alexandria – Agree re the Spencer family. So much for Earl Spencer’s eulogy at Diana’s funeral where he pledged that the blood family would look out for William and Harry. Fktards the lot of them.

  16. Over it says:

    The Windsors suck big time. Racist thieving assholes.

  17. Feeshalori says:

    I’d cut all ties with that toxic family and their property and rent or buy another home, no strings attached, if they plan future visits to the UK. I’d love to see the outraged haters picking their pearls up from the floor at the thought that H&M bought – gasp! – yet another property.

    • JT says:

      I think this would be the smart thing to do: just buy another home in the UK and cut all royal ties. Something private that they own and control, without having to deal with the royal shenanigans. That way they can move in and out of it without courtiers tipping off the press like they’ve done before. Besides, when the queen dies all bets are off. It would be better to have their own property.

      • Alexandria says:

        I wouldn’t even buy another home in the UK. Probably rent Rose’s estate for the week.

      • Sunday says:

        I disagree; if they had their own property it would be a huge target for reporters, paparazzi, drones, haters, or worse. It would only give the tabloids a home base at which to point their rage and madness. The family would not protect them and the cost to maintain that caliber of permanent security on an international property would be insane. IMO they’d be better off making arrangements (short-term rental/leases, staying at a friend’s unused estate) IF they return as a family – that way they can keep their location under wraps much more easily.

      • Beach Dreams says:

        Yeah I agree with Sunday. I think it would be more practical and safer if they either stayed at a friend’s unoccupied place or discreetly arranged to rent a place and have their team properly secure it a few days before they visit. At this point, buying property in the UK is going to have too many risks. Hopefully in a few years time, it’ll be safe and calm enough for them to purchase a home there if they feel like it.

  18. Anna222 says:

    I can’t believe they got bullied into paying for capital improvements on a rental. Literally none of their critics would even consider doing that.

    • S808 says:

      Yeah the British press would’ve had to kiss my ass in that regard. I get why they did it but I’d have left them screaming about decades into the future.

  19. Catherine says:

    They never expected Harry and Meghan to drop that check for the full amount plus leasing on them. All the people screaming they wanted their money back should be angry that the BRF used it as income. But of course they won’t be. They probably agreed to pay for a lease for several months because they thought they would be back more frequently but the pandemic put an end to those plans. By 2022 they will know whether or not they want to deal with being at Windsor.

  20. Dawning says:

    Let me get this straight: The Sussexes rented Frogmore Cottage and had to fund its repairs to get it in a liveable condition? Sounds like they enriched the landlord with this arrangement.
    Harry and Meghan owe them nothing. Then people had the gall to criticize them when it was reported that Eugenie was renting Frogmore from H&M.

  21. Amy Bee says:

    It wouldn’t surprise me if they gave up the lease in March 2022. Then Harry will be attacked for abandoning the UK.

  22. Emily says:

    Just looking at Frogmore compared to say Bagshot Park (where Edward and Sophie live) it was clear that the Sussexes got the short end of the stick.

  23. JRenee says:

    If this short lease story is accurate, the restoration funds repaid by the Sussexes was a giant grift. Where was the gift part?

  24. notasugarhere says:

    @Kaiser, just because the word ‘gifted’ is used, that isn’t what it means. Never has been, it is just the language used. W&K were ‘gifted’ Anmer Hall, but that doesn’t mean they own it. They were ‘gifted’ the ability to live there for free on Liz’s private Sandringham Estate. For Frogmore Cottage it means more like ‘granted the ability to’ have access to a Crown Estate property to lease.

    The Crown Estate doesn’t belong to Liz Windsor personally, she doesn’t get to hand out ownership of houses. Andrew, Edward, Princess Alexandra. The Crown Estate properties they live in involved them paying out millions to fix the place up, lump sums, and decades of pre-paid legal lease in return.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      The Michael Kents were “gifted” an apartment at Kensington Palace as wedding present by QEII and then were told 20 years later to start paying market rent or get out.

      The Michael Kents had to sell their country house, Nether Lypiatt Manor, to be able to afford to stay at Kensington Palace and pay market rent.

      • notasugarhere says:

        She also hid a cousin in there for decades. But she didn’t give them ownership of the place, just as she couldn’t give Harry and Meghan ownership of Frogmore Cottage.

        I think a lot of this boils down to courtiers again, coupled with QEII just *not getting it*, not understanding these properties aren’t hers. She knows about Crown Estate leases, because Andrew, Edward, Princess Alexandra have them.

        This should all have been set out legally the moment Frogmore Cottage was announced. It wasn’t, which led to so much speculation and little legal protections for Harry and Meghan.

  25. Ainsley7 says:

    So, the Sussexes supposedly owed 2.4 million. I mean not really, obviously the building wasn’t actually theirs, but the point is that is the number that is being used. So, the Sussexes gave 2.4 million, but that also included an 18-22 month lease.

    As working Royals they would not have had to pay a lease at all. So, it would seem to me that for PR purposes both sides came to an agreement. H&M would start paying rent because they were no longer entitled to live there for free. The crown estates knew that H&M didn’t owe them shit. It looks like they made the lease equal to the amount that the Sussexes “owed.” Although, I can’t imagine that being the actual market rate. That’s what the crown estates is supposed to charge the people who live on the estates who aren’t working Royals. 100,000+ a month seems a little high. However, I don’t know how much being on the grounds on Windsor jacks up the price.

    • notasugarhere says:

      As working royals, they would have had to pay for the lease of a Crown Estate property. Edward, Andrew, Princess Alexandra all had to pay for renovation of Crown Estate properties plus massive multi-year leases up front.

      If Harry and Meghan had chosen to live next to W&K at KP? Those reno costs would have been taxpayer funded and criticized just as much. Even though the reno was done while the Gloucesters were living there, for the Gloucesters.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        “Even though the reno was done while the Gloucesters were living there, for the Gloucesters.”

        Which the commentariat of The Daily Fail love to twist and present as Meghan having the Gloucesters evicted, spending taxpayer money on more even grander renovations followed by refusing to live near Wiglet because Wiglet’s 1A apartment was larger then DEMANDING grander accommodations at Windsor Castle proper.

        It never stops and it never will.

  26. Liz version 700 says:

    The Windsors are trash. This was obviously one of those blackmail tools used by Charles. “Come back or pay the 2.4 million on the maids quarters we put you in.” And Harry said here is you bleeping check. What a wonder wedding present. I hope Charles and William the biggest Karma intervention ever seen.

  27. Lexistential says:

    I hope they don’t renew the lease- unless Harry wants to do something kind for Eugenie and maintain it, fine, but that seems like an official tether that needs to go and something the press will always jump on. And if they’re ever in the UK, they can always do something like Soho House on the down low.

  28. Ann says:

    Maybe H&M offered and insisted upon paying because a) they could and more importantly b) then the grey men couldn’t lord over them anymore. I bet the little grey men tried telling them what color to paint the bathroom walls. Pay for your own reno, pick your own colors, etc. But on a much larger scale of course!

  29. Mia says:

    Love Meghan in that purple dress 😍

  30. Who Knows says:

    I don’t believe that Harry and Meghan were responsible for anything on Frogmore other than rent.

    They opted to pay back the renovations in order to not have that held over their heads by the press and public.

  31. nettie says:

    So maybe the 4 million that Charles apparently gave them last year paid for these renovations.

    • MsIam says:

      He didn’t “give” them £4 million but nice try.

    • Becks1 says:

      LOL no. Charles spent 4 million on the two households (Cambs and Sussex) but cut off funding for the Sussexes by July 2021 at the absolute LATEST (see other post on here about that topic). So from 4/1/2020 to 3/31/2021 he spent 4 million on the two households but was only “paying for” the Sussexes for a maximum of 3 months.

      So we know where Kate’s new clothes came from…..

  32. EllenOlenska says:

    Kates divorcee cottage….

    • Beach Dreams says:

      Really? I doubt she’d want to stay there for numerous reasons, one of them being that she’ll probably want to be as close to her parents as possible. I’m not sure if/how they can do it, but I expect Eugenie and Jack may try to see if they could stay in FC when the Sussexes’ lease ends.

      • notasugarhere says:

        At Frogmore Cottage, she’d be 45 minutes from her parents. Much shorter distance than the 3 hour drive from Anmer.

      • Beach Dreams says:

        Definitely @nota, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Kate wants to be even closer (I’m thinking no more than a half-hour drive). I’m also of two minds on whether she’d even like or want to reside in FC in the first place.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        Kate would never let in former servants because here Ma Middleton-Jenner would never let her or Baldingham end the of it. I am talking major Ma Middleton-Jenner tirade.

  33. Yep... says:

    Usually the landlord pays for structural and maintenance upgrades, this is so weird.
    The royal family are really dodgy doing this, and makes me think something’s up with their accounting. Plus referring to Harry and Meghan as simply renters who are fulfilling their obligations is odd. They don’t do this with any of the other queens kids or grandkids.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      @Yep – In the USA there are all kinds of leases. I am in middle of two really weird repairing-leases with my job.

      With regard to Crown Properties and Frogmore Cottage, we are not talking renting a residential condo, apartment or subdivision single-family house on a generic standard residential lease.

      Footnote: If I remember correctly, the Sussexes offered to pay as part of the exit agreement.

      I think the Sussexes were taken advantage of but without seeing the actually written lease and all codicils, we really cannot judge.

  34. Likeyoucare says:

    Good. Cut any ties from your family Harry.
    After this, any connection from them are not obligatory. You dont need to attend any activities with the BRF.
    When you want to visit your family, there shouldn’t be rules, they are not your boss anymore.

  35. TheOriginalMia says:

    Not only did they pay to have their wedding gift renovated, but their lease on the property was only for a short period of time. If I’m Harry & Meghan, I’d let Frogmore Cottage go. Let Eugenie have it if she wants. I’m sure Daddy & Granny can make arrangements for an extended lease on the property with the Crown Estates. As for Harry & Meghan, they can either purchase their own place, rent from their friends, or stay in a high-end hotel when they have to come into town. But under no circumstance would I stay on a Crown Estate after their lease is up. In so many small & big ways, the BRF have shown how little they care for them.

    • BnlurNforever says:

      It’s shocking how little they care for Harry and how quickly he was tossed. I didn’t expect any real feelings re: Meghan and since they’re very much a racist family, not surprised they obviously don’t care for Archie and Lili Diana. Then I remember that throughout time parents have cut off their offsprings for all manner of reasons, marrying outside of race, religion, nationality. Not being heterosexual, not going into the career field that parents want (I know someone who suffered this cut off.) The more you think about it, it’s really just dumb luck to be born to parents who extend unconditional love, isn’t it? Thank you to my parents and the universe for letting me be born to them.

      • Beach Dreams says:

        It’s shocking AND not shocking to me at the same time. It’s a shock because they’ve made it clear over the years that Harry (not his delusional dunce of a sister-in-law) was the cornerstone of the monarchy. He attracted as much adoration as his grandma and he had the charm and appeal his brother lacked. But yet it’s not shocking either, because they’ve abused him and put him down for practically his whole life.

    • lanne says:

      Perhaps these were the quarters for Harry’s “first wife”, and he would get something better once he got “properly married”. Frogmore house was used as a grace and favor home for poor Russian relations after WW1. Tsar Nicholas’s sister lived the rest of her life there penniless after fleeing Russia, dependent of gifts of clothing and food from Queen Mary. I think the courtiers expected Frogmore to be a home for Meghan post divorce. It’s not a premium property so they could afford to lease it to her for the rest of her life as a grace and favor home, to show the royals were “gracious” to Harry’s ridiculous ex wife.

      Frogmore was not at all a home for a son of a future king. I’m convinced it was supposed to be a first wife home, as conceived by those checkers playing grey men.

      Too bad they never considered what Harry’s feelings truly were. They never saw him as a human being at all. Just a tool for the monarchy.

      • SnoodleDumpling says:

        I’m a little confused here…Frogmore HOUSE was built in the 17th century and has had many royals as tenants, from the 1st Duke of Northumberland to George III’s wife Queen Charlotte to pre-kingship George V and wife Mary, and now primarily serves as a museum of sorts as established by the aforementioned Queen Mary.

        Harry and Meghan lived in Frogmore cottage, built in the 19th century in Frogmore House’s gardens, which has housed the theologian Henry James Sr., Queen Victoria’s private secretary Abdul Karim, and the Grand Duchess Xenia Alexandrovna, and had been later converted to servant’s quarters.

        I’m honestly not sure which of the two you are talking about here.

      • lanne says:

        I was talking about Frogmore cottage, not house. Where Meghan and Harry live.

    • notasugarhere says:

      1) It wasn’t a gift, it was the ‘gift’ of being allowed to puchase the Crown Estate lease for that property

      2) Many other royals have the same type of ‘gift’. Andrew, Edward, Princess Alexandra’s husband all paid million up front to restore/upgrade existing Crown Estate properties they will never own either. Pay millions up front for decades of a lease too.

      The difference here is the odd short-term part of the lease. It could be Harry and Meghan didn’t want to pay/sign for a multi-decade lease on Frogmore Cottage. They wanted to save their money to get out.

      • Who Knows says:

        I’ve read the original sources of this (not the DM) as they’ve paid the lease until March 2022. Not that the lease legally expires March 2022.

        They can likely extend if they want, but why would they really want to, at the same terms.

      • Saucy&Sassy says:

        notasugarhere, what puzzles me is that I understand that Frogmore Cottage is a Crown Estate property. There is a separate entity who actually husbands the Crown Estate properties? Was the money to pay for this property out of the money TQ gets each year of tax payer monies specifically for these properties? If so, why isn’t it listed that this money was added back to the money TQ got for that specific purpose? Also, wouldn’t the lease dollars also be going to . . . well, maybe whoever husbands the Crown Estate properties? This all confuses me, and the way this sounds is that the 2.4 mil was just added onto what the brf uses for it’s expenses for being working royals? I don’t understand any of this.

        I keep going back and forth about whether H&M will keep Frogmore. Part of me thinks maybe they should because the rrs can’t get to them when they’re there. Also, would they be required to tell someone that they are going to be in the UK (except Eugenie of course.) IMO they should always have their private security with them, but I don’t know whether the RPOs would allow that on a palace estate. There’s a lot that I don’t know or understand. I just think they should go to the UK under the radar and people can be told once they’re home again. Wouldn’t that p!ss off the rrs?

      • notasugarhere says:

        The Crown Estate is a separate entity, not tied to Sovereign Grant or other things like Buckingham Palace. The Crown Estate is required to keep Crown Estate properties in good order. Do they? Not always. Millions were needed for both Royal Lodge and Bagshot.

        Frogmore Cottage was already slated to have structural, plumbing, and electrical upgrades – paid by the Crown Estate. When it was decided that’s where Harry and Meghan would live? They (Harry and Meghan) paid for different structural changes to make it a single family home, for upgraded finishes, those types things iirc. Now it looks like Sussex Family paid all of it, even stuff the Crown Estate should have paid. Just to get people off their backs.

  36. RoyalBlue says:

    this is racism hiding in plain sight. there is no other explanation.

  37. Cessily says:

    What happened to those infamous 150 year leases for pennies on the £ that other Royals enjoy without harassment?

  38. KT says:

    Eh, Royal Accounts are always fudged.
    The Royals don’t really want to have to announce their spending to the world, so they obfuscate a lot and spin.

    Either the cost of the renovations wasn’t really £2.4m or they have a peppercorn rent on the lease because after all, the lease *was* meant to be a wedding gift from The Queen. There was a similar fudge with the Kents’ rent as I recall, which they are technically charged but HM covers as the apartment was a wedding gift.

    (It’s all silly anyway – the buildings must be maintained, and can’t really be rented out commercially. Living in them is the best way to make sure they are looked after. Buckingham Palace’s update is long overdue in part because they hate the place and don’t really want to live there.)

    • notasugarhere says:

      They can be rented out. Fort Belevedere is leased to a former diplomat who happens to be a friend of Charles. Like spaces at Kensington Palace and St James Palace, if you have the money and pass the background checks, you can lease property from the Crown Estate. They have lots of properties.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        Fort Belvedere and the leaseholders, Galen and Hilary Weston

        Since the early 1980s, the lease on Fort Belvedere has been held by the Canadian billionaire retail magnate Galen Weston and his wife, Hilary. The Westons have carried out extensive works on the fort, constructing a polo stud and doubling the size of the lake in the grounds.

        Mr. & Mrs. Galen Weston Persons have contributed tens of millions of dollars to The Prince’s Trust and United World Colleges (a Prince Philip pet charity) and have helped (bamboozled) encourage other of there rich international friends to do the same.

        Mr. Galen Weston Person is a Canadian grocery and dry goods store retail magnet. Mr. Galen Weston Person also developed the enclave known as Windsor, Florida on the east coast of Florida. The Viscount Astor (Sam Cam’s step-dad) and The Duke of Marlborough have homes in Windsor, Florida as does Mark’s Phillip’s second ex-wife.

      • notasugarhere says:

        That’s what I’m saying. The royals have enormous influence over who gets to rent Crown Estate properties, but there are dozens of them all over the UK. Those have lengthy lease agreements, not this weird situation Harry and Meghan have been put in.

  39. MMadison says:

    I think it’s finally all coming to light the treatment of Meghan/Harry by Charles and Betty. I will say this again……Meghan was USED by Charles and Betty to secure Charles’s position with the Commonwealth. Once that was done that was it…they proudly handed them over to the wolves (British Press and People)

    • lanne says:

      But is their position with the commonwealth secure now? If they really wanted to use her, they would have used her. She was a perfect ambassador to send all over the world. One good thing to come from this mess is to see the utter stupidity of the royals. If they were smart, they WOULD have used Meghan, even if they hated her. They would have smiled in her face, made her feel welcome, let her shine as “proof” that they welcomed her. They would have even let her outshine Kate. They could have worked to undermine her for a few years. If they were subtle enough about it, Harry likely wouldn’t have noticed, and it could have been a legitimate source of conflict between them. She really could have been the 3-5 year wife they hoped for.

      Now, they have created this David and Goliath love story that has the whole world rooting for them as a couple. The Commonwealth that the Queen cares so much about is looking less and less viable over the long term.

      I just realized something. The Queen has hosted people like Idi Amin, Vladimir Putin, and various other dictators. The royals treated the wife of a so-called beloved family member with less respect than they treated murderous dictators. Beautiful.

      • Curious says:

        reading about the commonwealth,this was said –Apr 19, 2018 Prince Charles will succeed his mother, Queen Elizabeth, as the head of the Commonwealth. The decision was made by Commonwealth leaders on at Windsor Castle on Friday” I guess by Meghan (POC) marrying Harry the commonwealth leaders thought they was going in the right direction.

      • notasugarhere says:

        The Queen leaned heavily on sentiment to have Charles name Head after her. It isn’t a position of power, it is one of PR. The leaders of The Commonwealth are free to name a new defacto Head at any time.

  40. Mooney says:

    I’m still salty they got the servant quarters as wedding gift 🤬 and they had to pay for making it liveable and rent too. While all others have those massive estates with barely a screech from the taxpayers. And that one Cotswolds home they were forced out.

    After the lease is over, Eugenie should pay for it.

  41. Nivz says:

    I feel some real anger (some of it is because I haven’t eaten breakfast yet) about the way Harry and Meghan have been subjected to more of these double standards, without an ounce of defence or protection from the royals.

    And Eugenie is sweet and all but why the feck should harry and Meghan have to be responsible for her family? They have two kids to bring up in what is probably the expensive part of the world. I’m just so mad at what they have gone through and continue to go through.

  42. L4frimaire says:

    Paying back Frogmore was like paying a ransom to be released from a hostage situation. Remember they had to pay for all of the interior furbishmenta themselves, that was never covered. I hope they/are done with that property and keep any future arrangements of UK housing completely private.

    • Jay says:

      A ransom seems an apt way to describe it. I imagine that being free and self- reliant was worth it in the end.

      You just know the lease ending and upkeep costs would have been held over them, not unlike the one year review. Glad they got out when the getting was good.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        If you have the money in the bank and know you have a steady income stream for the indefinite future sometimes it easier and best to just write a check, say F-off, then call your best buddy (Oprah) and just let it all out!

  43. Athena says:

    There’s some built in security from being on the Windsor estate, if they buy somewhere else or lease the security cost will be significant.

  44. The Recluse says:

    I can’t even begin to wrap my mind around this convoluted rental arrangement. They had to pay back money on a property that was ‘gifted’ to them by the Queen, which was a money pit basically and after all that it wasn’t a serious long term lease?! WTF?
    They’re so much better off in their OWN home in California. if I had been in their shoes, I would have just bought a modest estate outside of royal control when I had married into their family. Fortunately I am just a poor little American who doesn’t have to deal with these sorts of relations and their BS.

    • ennie says:

      The problem is that it was not a feasible option. That was demonstrated during their short rental stint.

  45. Who Knows says:

    New theory…

    Harry’s lease on Frogmore ends March 2022. William and Kate move in April 2022.

    • notasugarhere says:

      W&K could never live together in a 4 bedroom house with their army of nannies, housekeepers, and having to be that close to each other every day. They couldn’t even manage it back when they rented a lux 4-bed farmhouse in Wales. Kate wasn’t there most of the time, she was in London or with Mummy in Berkshire.

  46. Thirtynine says:

    I didn’t get it either. I thought it was a gift- not ‘here are the deeds’ but, ‘please, accept this cottage for life as my wedding gift to you, my dear grandson, and may you be blessed’ sort of thing. Sure, it needed some reno’s, most old places do, and they had an opportunity to personalise parts of it as it was done. Anything over and above, they chipped in. That all sounds quite reasonable to me. It didn’t seem odd it was a cottage- I thought a romantic cottage sounded much more like something they would enjoy than a manor house. I was disgusted that they were harassed into paying more of the renovations on top of that, and now it turns out it was only a short term lease after all? Harry is better off and his family is safer not being beholden to them for anything. Cut your losses and run, I say.

  47. Sunnyvale says:

    I’m late to commenting(again) but as I said in earlier posts about sussexs repaying the refurb costs, I sense this is a true sussexist from UK.
    The joke’s on UK press/RF who thought this was a “catchy” name to mock them. Now together with the disastrous brexit debacle and the incoming independence of Scotland (& probably Canada & Australia becoming republics) they’re doomed. These 🤡s have truly lost their only link/tool to bully them.

    I predicted before that they’d move to America and also said they’ll likely buy a holiday home or a chateau with vineyards(business opportunities) later. I’m thinking possibly in NZ or France.